The Ethernet side of the ACT-2000 is up 24/7, ran a constant Ping on it over night just to see if it would ever drop. I am forced, due to lack of other equipment, use optoDisp to tell me whether or not the com port is functioning. OptoDisp shows a dropped connection, attempts to reconnect for a while (always roughly 15min) and then reconnects and sails along again for hours at a time.
I've since fixed my link, not sure what happened there.
Yes to the opto controller being used to talk to the ATC, and Yes to Opto control being used to download the controller's strategy.
I am using the drivers GridConnect has told me to use, as the drivers that come with the device do not work for windows XP, and the windows 7 drivers are questionable at best.
Unfortunately I do not know how long the serial cable is. It is worth noting, however, that this works flawlessly when an integrated RS232 port is used, and the ATC-2000 is removed from the picture. That is, unfortunately, not an option as the computers that read from the Opto controller have since been moved out of reach of the serial cable.
Hope this helps you help me.